April 19, 2016 Practice Briefing

Below, you’ll find a schedule, what to expect, a little disclaimer, and a bit about the rest of the summer.


  • 5:30 pair up and rig Mercuries (try to match with someone of a similar skill/experience level, as most of you will want to switch off skippering and crewing)
  • I will get there as early as I can, probably about 5:45
  • 6pm-sunset: on-water drills (radio out to me if you’re late)
  • I plan to debreif on the dock or at the bar afterwards. I know a few people have a fleet meeting to get to so there will be more by email/blog

I usually run a practice in four parts:

  1. collection drill: gathers everyone in one place around a couple of buoys and gets us warmed up
  2. upwind/downwind drill like tacking on the whistle (there’s a little more to it than that): this is a chance to work on just a couple skills at a time, without the added stresses of a race, and to repeat these elements
  3. starting drill (low speed, line judge, hold your spot, etc.), focusing on one or two skills relevant to the start.
  4. debrief

Two-part disclaimer:

  1. the weather looks bizarre tomorrow night, calling for breeze in the 3-24kts range (huh??) but clearing skies.  This is a bit tough to plan for so bear with me.
  2. while I’ve coached a lot of junior race teams (and I really enjoy it), I’ve never coached adults, or in mercs, or on the charles, so this’ll be a bit of a learning process for me as well. If you hear my voice raised, I’m probably just trying to be heard above the din of luffing sails. Don’t be put off.

Going forward: The thought is to have these every two or three weeks, but if they’re more or less popular we will adjust.  The next date is 5/3 and then we’re thinking to try a Thursday 5/19.  After that it’ll prolly be June.